Tag Archives: Adult Education

Back to school

29 Nov

Raising children alone is an arduous job. I became pregnant at a young age and decided in the space of a few days to raise my child, a son, and to refrain from the behaviors which stereotype most young, single mothers. My efforts over the last seventeen years, the help and advice of many friends and family as well as a firm belief in God’s power to heal and overcome have produced a valiant young man. However, as I am reminded from time to time, my work isn’t over and it hasn’t gotten any easier.
My son has ADHD, along with countless other young people in our country. Years of chasing a sometimes-out-of-control toddler and puzzling over bizarre impulsive behavior brought me to my knees many times in the privacy of my bathroom. After admitting that he needed medical assistance around the fourth grade, our lives became easier, but not easy. It has taken a steadfast adherence to my belief that children don’t need to fit a cookie cutter mold imposed by overworked educators to keep me from throwing up my hands and letting my son drift away with the herds of delinquents that roam the streets in our town. At times this has meant sitting opposite principals, teachers, school counselors and advocates demanding that the school find classroom options that work for my son. At other times, this has meant working reduced hours to drive my son to and from school and keep him from the bus which seemed to be a breeding ground for behavior issues. The solutions were never permanent and I have been forced to be creative in my efforts to help him find success.
Mostly, I have had to reinvent my own definition of success. I always assumed my kids would be adept academically, superior athletically and motivated socially. Growing up with my son has given me better perspective that people are all unique. Each created for his own purpose. We can set achievable expectations for ourselves and our children, but we cannot force our ideals, motivations and desires onto those around us, even if those around us are the children carried in our bodies for nine months.
In the last year I have seen the fruits of my labor! I have thankfully acknowledged each glimpse of maturity, wisdom and patience in my son. I no longer hope that he will fulfill all of my own unachieved dreams, but I have found the motivation to pursue those long lost dreams myself. So, as my son moves out of his academic season, I move into mine.

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